2013 November | AllPeopleQuilt.com Staff Blog
 

November 2013

11 posts.

Make It Tonight: Simple Stocking

All you need is two fat quarters to make this simple stocking! Sew one for every member of your family and fill them with fun surprises! This project is courtesy of our sewing blog, howtosew.com. Visit daily for new sewing projects and lots of holiday decorations and gift ideas!

 

Materials:

  • 2 fat quarters (or two 18×22″ pieces of fabric) for stocking and stocking lining
  • Stocking pattern (find PDF here)
  • Scrap of lining fabric for hanger

 Finished stocking: approximately 7×16″

 

Assemble the Stocking:

 

1. Fold lining fat quarter in half lengthwise with right sides on the outside. Pin the stocking pattern to the stacked fabric.

 

2. Cut out around the pattern. You will have two stocking lining shapes facing opposite directions.

 

3. Repeat steps 1-2 with the stocking fat quarter.

 

4. Layer one stocking and one stocking lining on top of each other with right sides together.

 

5. Pin the top of the layered stockings together. Sew the top of the stockings using a 1/4″ seam allowance. Press seams open.

 

6. Repeat steps 4-5 with the other two stocking shapes.

 

 

7. Layer the two pairs of stocking sets on top of each other with right sidestogether. Make sure the two stocking linings are laying on top of each other. Pin together.

 

8. Sew around the stocking shape using a 1/4″ seam allowance. Leave a 4″ opening on the lining side.

 

 

9. Clip notches on the toe curve to prevent bulk.

 

10. Turn the stocking right side out through the 4″ opening in the lining. Sew the 4″ opening closed using matching thread.

 

11. Push the lining into the stocking; smooth out.

 

12. Cut your saved scrap of lining fabric to 1-1/2×3″. Fold the rectangle in half lengthwise with right sides  on the outside and sew the long side. We used white thread so you can see, but you should use a matching thread.

 

13. Fold the rectangle in half again to form a small loop. Position the loop approximately 2-1/2″ from the top on the inside of the stocking on the heel side. Sew the loop in place.

 

Note: You will have a small stich line on the back of your stocking. If you use a matching thread, it won’t be too noticeable.

 

15. Fold the top over and press in place with an iron to give it a crisp finish. The hanging loop will stick out the top.

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Perfect Your Skills: String Piecing

Each month, learn a fun trick or tip to make your quilting easier and more polished!

String Fling from American Patchwork & Quilting August 2012 (buy it here)

 

The rules for string piecing are simple–there are no rules! So give this technique a try. It’s the perfect way to use up your scraps while enjoying the freedom of piecing without perfection.

 

1. Position a strip diagonally across center of a muslin foundation square. (Note: foundation square should be 1/4″ larger on all sides than finished block.) Pin in place.

 

2. From an assorted print scrap, cut a strip that is at least as long as first strip.

 

3. Place print strip right side down on first strip; align a pair of long edges. Sew through all layers with a 1⁄4″ seam allowance.

 

 

4. Press print strip open.

 

5. Roughly trim print strip about 1/2″ beyond muslin foundation (Photo D).

 

6.  Cut a third print strip that is at least as long as the long raw edge of the first print strip. Repeat steps 3–5 to add third print strip to foundation.

 

7. Continue in same manner, covering each half of foundation square with print strips; skew strips in opposite directions so interesting angles are created.

 

8. Trim foundation to desired square including seam allowances to complete a string block.

 


Quilt-Along: Gone to the Dark Side?

Ready for more of the American Patchwork & Quilting Quilt-Along? (Click here if you missed last week’s post—there’s still time to join in the fun. We’re working on a quilt pattern you can find in the February 2014 issue of American Patchwork & Quilting magazine on-sale now at quilt shops, newsstands, and digitally at allpeoplequilt.com/getdigital.)

 

To pick up where I left off last week, I chose a palette of taupes for my version of Tone It Down and then mixed in some brushed cottons to add variety to the mix. Once I’d pulled all the potential fabrics from my stash, I spread them out on a cutting mat to get a feel for the range of colors and to see if anything popped out too much. Remember, my self-imposed rule was to keep contrast to a minimum and use only what I had.

 

I sorted into “lights” and “darks” which was no small task given the drab tone of my entire selection. Here’s what I felt could work as my “darks.”

 

And here is my selection of “lights.”

 

Now it didn’t take long for me to notice that there are way more darks than lights, which speaks to a continuing problem in my stash saga. When fabric shopping (or as I like to call it, researching) I’m almost always attracted to rich, saturated colors in fabrics—the darker and richer the better—leaving me with a paltry number of lights in the mix. Note to self: buy more lights when stash building to round out the assortment of fabrics on hand. (Whew, I feel like I’ll be on a mission now to help myself build a better stash! Don’t you love it when a project designed to use your stash leads you to begin replacement therapy right away? Tough work, but someone’s got to do it. I’m in!)

 

Okay, back to the project at hand. Here are the few fabrics I kicked out of the mix.

What got them tossed out? Looking at the photo from dark to light, here are my reasons:

 

  • Too dark and thus too much contrast.
  • Too minty and bold, stood out like a sore thumb.
  • This one looked like it should work, but in the end was too light to be a dark, and too dark to be a light. Stuck in the middle, this one stood out too much in the pile.
  • Way too light and bright.

 

Once I put it all together, here’s my final fabric palette.

 

I’m ready to piece a block together and my plan is this: Two fabrics per block, contrast kept to a minimum without getting too mushy. My challenge? I’m not sure I can do it using only these fabrics. But, I’m excited at the prospect of trying. That’s the fun of the quilt-along…trying something new and seeing whether or not it works. If it does, great! If it doesn’t….well, there could be some great patchwork pillows for my son and husband in this mix. Stay tuned…

 

 

Jennifer Keltner,

Executive Editor

 

P. S. If you decide to join in—don’t forget to share! We’re so excited to see what everyone’s making as they quilt along! We created a hashtag you can use on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Simply hashtag any uploaded photos to your own social media sites with #APQquiltalong. That will make it easy for all of us to see what everyone is working on! I’ll be back to share my progress with you soon.

 

 

Now, check out these other Quilt Along participant’s blogs:

  •  Amy Ellis of Amy’s Creative Side, amyscreativeside.com. Amy’s planning to make a guy-worthy quilt, with a scrappy mix of blue, green, and gray fabrics.
  • Anne Sutton of Bunny Hill Designs, bunnyhillblog.com. A rich, vintage look in hues of beige, purple, and rusty brown is what Anne is seeking.
  • Camille Roskelley of Thimble Blossoms, camilleroskelley.typepad.com. A scrappy, cheerful assortment of Bonnie and Camille prints ups the contrast.
  • Carrie Nelson of Miss Rosie’s Quilt Co., lavieenrosie.typepad.com. Carrie adds a French twist, working in a scrappy three-color palette of French General fabrics.
  • Jane Davidson of Quilt Jane, quiltjane.blogspot.com. Jane’s version is all about text-ure—text prints mixed with solid-color wovens.
  • Kimberly Jolly of Fat Quarter Shop, fatquartershop.blogspot.com. The big blocks pop when separated by colorful sashing on Kimberly’s quilt.
  • Lisa Bongean of Primitive Gatherings, lisabongean.com. Lisa turns up the volume with black backgrounds and cream and tan print patchwork.
  • Lissa Alexander, modalissa.blogspot.com. Lissa shares her experience and tips about the process of making the featured version of Tone It Down.
  • Sherri McConnell of A Quilting Life, www.aquiltinglife.com A fan of primary colors and American Jane prints? Sherri’s version might be just what inspires you!

 

 


100 Modern Quilt Blocks: Month 2

I’ve discovered another reason why I love pulling from my stash: I change my mind. Using scraps and collected fat quarters from over the years makes me feel less guilty when I make a block and then decide not to use it. And it allows me the freedom to experiment with colors and sew some sample blocks without wasting my money.

 

If you read my first blog on making Tula Pink‘s City Sampler: 100 Modern Quilt Blocks, you’ll know why pulling from my stash became especially important. (Read my first blog here.) I started this quilt thinking that I would replicate the colors Tula used in her blocks. I started with reds and pinks and was planning the design of what would eventually become a rainbow-inspired quilt.

 

After a few weeks of making blocks, I realized that rainbow would not match my home decor OR my own aesthetic. Although I love the look of rainbow, I’m much more drawn to creams, blues, and greens. And after a quick look through my stash, it was clear that those colors were ones that I had been collecting more than others. I “scrapped” the blocks I’d already made and started over.

 

My new quilt (at least that’s the plan now!), will have two brown rows on the outside, will move through greens, teals, light blues, and end with a dark blue row in the middle.

Block numbers 13, 2, 10:

Follow our blog to watch my progress! And follow us on Instagram at @allpeoplequilt to see weekly pics of the blocks I’m making.

 

Buy Tula’s book here and play along with us!

 

Happy quilting,

Lindsay

 


Quilt Along With Us!

What I love most about taking a quilting class is that in addition to what I learn from the instructor, I also always take away something I learn from other participants in the class. There are so many great ideas for ways to make quilting more fun, more precise, more enjoyable, more distinctive…more amazing. The downside is I don’t always have time to take all the classes I want. That’s why I’m thrilled about this first-ever quilt along with American Patchwork & Quilting magazine. It will be like taking a class with nine top instructors, AND I can quilt along in my pajamas from the comfort of my own sewing room.

 

Join these designers, below, and follow their progress as they Quilt Along on Tone It Down.

Between November 19 and February 5, they’ll each be sharing their version—along with the tips, tools, and tricks they used in making their quilts. You may wish to join in the fun by making Tone It Down just like the original quilt, or you may find a colorway you prefer from one of the other designers. The choice is yours. The quilt pattern can be found in the February 2014 issue of American Patchwork & Quilting magazine, available beginning December 3rd.

 

 

If you’re a subscriber, your copy should arrive soon. If you’re not a subscriber, look for the issue at quilt shops or on newsstands, or download the digital edition at allpeoplequilt.com/getdigital. The rules are simple—there are none! Make your quilt the way you like it in the size and color palette you love!

 

 

First up, let’s talk about low-volume. That’s what the original quilt started out as an exercise in for designer Lissa Alexander. An antique quilt inspired her design. “I don’t ordinarily piece with a variety of small to medium light-tone background prints,” Lissa says. “That’s just not what I have in my stash. For this quilt, working with those prints became the challenge. I tried to keep the contrast to a minimum. I do know I turned the volume up when I started mixing in reds, oranges, and dark blues. Much like a favorite song on the radio, I just couldn’t help myself. I had to turn it up a bit!”

 

Much like asking a group of listeners what constitutes low volume when referring to a television’s sound, asking quilters for a definition of low-volume quilts can elicit varied responses. But here are a few similarities most low-volume quilts share:

  • They generally are pieced from a scrappy mix of prints that all have light or white backgrounds. These low-contrast fabrics can appear almost solid from a distance, but up close you can see the texture and diversity of the fabrics.
  • The finished quilt often has a delicate appearance with a soft cottage or even faded look.
  • Once pieced, the quilt pattern takes a backseat to the myriad incorporated fabric patterns.

 

 

GETTING STARTED

When I began selecting fabrics for my version, I wanted to stay true to Lissa’s idea of challenging myself with a fabric palette I might not otherwise work with. What did I choose? Taupes.

 Ordinarily, I’m a high-contrast quilter who uses a scrappy assortment of colors in my quilts. But for this project, I was inspired by the beautiful palette used by many Japanese quiltmakers. So I pulled some Japanese Daiwabo fabrics out of my stash and then added some other taupes (from Maywood and EESchenck) I had stashed away long ago. What I love about these fabrics is that it’s not only about color, it’s about texture. Look at the great textures in these prints.

 

 

Then, because I’m not really a purist at heart, I threw in some brushed cottons that I felt would round out the palette.

 

This was a bundle of Whimsicals fabric by designer Terri Degenkolb. Again, it’s an older line I had in my stash, but I thought some of the colors would work and I like the idea of using a variety of textures too.

 

As an experiment, I thought I’d try to work with only the stash fabrics and not add anything else. Since most of what I had in this palette was fat eighths or fat quarters—it adds to the challenge (thrill?!?) when it comes to cutting out the required number of pieces for each block. But, I love a challenge…. Next week, I’ll share how I added and removed fabrics from the mix.

 

Jennifer Keltner,

Executive Editor

 

P. S. If you decide to join in—don’t forget to share! We’re so excited to see what everyone’s making as they quilt along! We created a hashtag you can use on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Simply hashtag any uploaded photos to your own social media sites with #APQquiltalong. That will make it easy for all of us to see what everyone is working on! I’ll be back to share my progress with you soon.

 

 

Now, check out these other Quilt Along participant’s blogs:

  •  Amy Ellis of Amy’s Creative Side, amyscreativeside.com. Amy’s planning to make a guy-worthy quilt, with a scrappy mix of blue, green, and gray fabrics.
  • Anne Sutton of Bunny Hill Designs, bunnyhillblog.com. A rich, vintage look in hues of beige, purple, and rusty brown is what Anne is seeking.
  • Camille Roskelley of Thimble Blossoms, camilleroskelley.typepad.com. A scrappy, cheerful assortment of Bonnie and Camille prints ups the contrast.
  • Carrie Nelson of Miss Rosie’s Quilt Co., lavieenrosie.typepad.com. Carrie adds a French twist, working in a scrappy three-color palette of French General fabrics.
  • Jane Davidson of Quilt Jane, quiltjane.blogspot.com. Jane’s version is all about text-ure—text prints mixed with solid-color wovens.
  • Kimberly Jolly of Fat Quarter Shop, fatquartershop.blogspot.com. The big blocks pop when separated by colorful sashing on Kimberly’s quilt.
  • Lisa Bongean of Primitive Gatherings, lisabongean.com. Lisa turns up the volume with black backgrounds and cream and tan print patchwork.
  • Lissa Alexander, modalissa.blogspot.com. Lissa shares her experience and tips about the process of making the featured version of Tone It Down.
  • Sherri McConnell of A Quilting Life, www.aquiltinglife.com A fan of primary colors and American Jane prints? Sherri’s version might be just what inspires you!